Last evening, before retiring, I happened to read from Yogananda's translation/commentary of the Gita, where I came across his observation that at a certain point of accomplishment or advancement or development (my words, not his ... unfortunately, I do not now remember just where I read this, so I cannot quote directly) a seeker is able simultaneously to be aware of both the immanence and the transcendence of the Divine. That is (as I understand it), to live in the world, to relate to the world (people, stuff, ideas, etc.), to be active in the world, even while being fully, consciously, spontaneously aware that It Is God.The one that recognizes the illusion does not act as if it is real.
How does that fit with ihavesayso's daughter's discovery?
... does not act as if it is real.
Well, not exactly. If Yogananda is right (well, of course, he is right ... I mean, who am I to ... I guess what I meant there is, if I have understood Yogananda rightly), then the yogi (as Yogananda calls such a one) does act as if it is real not because he believes it is real but because only by acting so is he/she genuinely relating, right? Otherwise, his/her actions are phony, aren't they?
Da Free John, the brilliant but badly behaved teacher, uses a nice term here when he says something like, For a seeker at that point, the world becomes non-binding.
Non-binding. That is, such a seeker responds appropriately to the world and its inhabitants, but is not bound by any of it. No karma is formed. Why? Because as ihavesayso's line suggests, such a seeker knows it is not real, but all the same, as long as such a seeker is in the world, he/she behaves appropriately to it.
Does that work?
Here, I am reminded, say, of the Gospels Teacher. He spoke to people, related to them, and behaved with them, as if they were people. But it is perfectly clear from all that he Taught that all along he knew, even as he so acted, that they were not people because "people" is an illusion.
So, he acted as if the illusion were real because ... it was appropriate to do so. And he did not, when it was not appropriate to do so (like performing miracles or reminding Pilate of the limitations of Rome's -- the illusion's -- power over Reality).
So, we are left with something like "The one that recognizes the illusion does not act as if it is real unless it is appropriate to do so" which is not as flowing as the other way but maybe sometimes a bit of clumsiness is necessary.
Anyway, I am grateful to ihavesayso's daughter for generating these thoughts, however incomplete they may still be.